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  CSPAN    U.S. Senate    News/Business.  

    September 11, 2012
    12:00 - 5:00pm EDT  

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quorum call:
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mr. nelson: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from florida. mr. nelson: i ask consent we
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can lift the quorum call. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. nelson: mr. president, i want to go ahead on this veterans job corps bill. i had anticipated that i would be speaking after the chairman of the committee, senator murr murray, but i'll take the liberty of going ahead and then with her comments coming as the chairman of the committee, which would normally it be the reverse. and i thank senator murray for her leadership in all of these veterans' issues, but particularly the issue of unemployment among veterans when they come home from the war, and especially among veterans that
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are age 24 and less, the unemployment figure is even higher. now, it's, i think, appropriate on this particular day, september 11, 11 years ago today the fact that those terroristsjl airliners, causing the crash at the world trade center, at the pentagon, and in a field in pennsylvania. what was happening also that morning with a that police officers -- was that police officers and firefighters and emergency personnel rushed to respond, and many lost their lives in attempts to save othe
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others. and the events of that morning mobilized american forces like we had not seen in years. one of the first mobilizations was our united states military. and they were called to serve bravely in remote corners of the global. 11 years later the mastermind of 9/11, osama bin laden, was taken down, and we now have an al qaeda that is severely diminished, and we are bringing our troops home from that part of the world. but, mr. president, for the troops when they come home, the fight is not over.
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there's another fight when they get back home to america. it's a different type of battle. the unemployment rate among veterans returning from iraq and afghanistan was just under 11% in august. it's higher for those who are younger, and this problem is likely to continue to grow as we draw down in afghanistan, just like we've already drawn down in iraq. it's worth noting that there have been steps made in the right direction. this past summer we passed legislation that'll help veterans get federal occupational licenses when their military training matches the civilian requirements. that was a bill that i had the privilege of sponsoring.
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it passed the senate unanimous unanimously. it was passed by the house overwhelmingly. it was sent down, and it was signed into law. and last year we passed a bill granting tax benefits to companies that hire wounded warriors, but we have to do more. so we filed this legislation that the chairman of the committee, senator murray, will further explain, and this legislation is to create a veterans' job corps. it's modeled after the civilian conservation corps of the 1930's. the veterans' job corps would put veterans back to work restoring and protecting americans' public lands and waters.
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the bill would also create opportunities for veterans to serve as police and firefighters. and fires responders. -- and first responders. we've had some success on this with a smaller-scale project like the veterans' fire corps pilot program at the u.s. departmen-- at theu.s. departme. in fact it's been so successful that folks who run these programs say they can hardly keep trainees in the program because they're picked up for full-time employment so fast. so we're expanding this idea from this pilot study that has been so successful. we're expanding it now into the veterans' job corps. now, mr. president, 10% of this
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bill's money will go to hiring veterans with the specialties such as military police for civilian law enforcement and for military specialties such as a medic and firefighters for first responders. not only would this bill help protect our communities, but the veterans' job corps will help address the federal maintenance backlog. the national park service has deferred maintenance totaling over $11 billion. this backlog has been caused by the gradual shifting of funding to the operations budgets of the park service at the expense of everything else. for example, at the civil war
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battlefield in fredericksburg, virginia, a $42 million backlog in maintenance is preventing the upkeep of that vital piece of american history. mr. president, i'm happy to say that a number of organizations have stepped forward to support this bill. the american legion, the military officers association of america, the iraq and afghanistan veterans of america, the national association of police organizations. all of them support this legislation. mr. president, one of the greatest honors that i have in this job as senator is getting out to meet and to greet current members of our military all over
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the globe and to thank the veterans back here at home for their service to our country. when you meet some of these folks, both young and old, they've already done the tough, tough job, and then they come home and they have tough times as well. these folks, they're hardworking, they're highly trained, highly disciplined, extremely skilled. we need to give them as many opportunities as possible to succeed when they get back home here in america. it's up to us to stand up and stand by our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coast guardsmen.
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i want to urge the senate when we vote today at 2:15 to grant the motion for cloture so that we can get on the bill and then take up this bill and quickly pass it so that those who have fought bravely for our nation can find employment when they come home. thank you, mr. president. mr. president, i yield the floor, and i would suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from washington. mrs. murray: consent the quorum call be lifted. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. murray: we heard the senator from florida talk about the very important piece of legislation that is in front of us and i want to thank him for being the lead on this and all the work he's put in and the passion he's had to make sure our veterans in this nation have what they need when they come home from these wars. last friday we were again remind of the difficult position our nation's veterans continue to face. in the rate for august we saw across the country there were 720,000 unemployed veterans. it's a number that includes over 225,000 post-9/11 veterans, many of them who have served multiple tours in iraq and afghanistan and have sacrificed time and again for our safety.
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mr. president, this should not be the case. our veterans have what it takes to not only go out and find work but to excel in the work force of the 21st century. in fact, the characteristics that our veterans have exemplify read like the job qualifications you might find at any major company or small business and that's because they have leadership ability, discipline, technical skills, teamwork, and the ability to perform under pressure. no question. and they have those skills because as a country we have invested in training them. we cannot and should not let that training or the millions of dollars we have invested in these he men and women go to waste. but in far too many instance district attorneys that is exactly what's happening. too often on the day our service members are discharged we as nation pat them on the back, thank them for their service but we don't give them a helping hand into the job harkt.
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that has -- market. that has to end. this senate has taken bipartisan action in the past to begin to change the way that our veterans do transition from the battlefield to the job market. we were able to pass the vow to hire heroes act last year. importantly that law transforms the way we provide transition training to our service members when they leave the military. and it includes a provision that today in my home state and across the country is providing thousands of dollars in tax credits to businesses to hire our vets. in addition to that bill we've also worked to build partnerships with the private sector in order to tap into the goodwill our companies have for our returning heroes. sometimes this is as simple as working with a company to show them the easy steps that can help bring veterans on board, things like ensuring that they're advertising their job openings with local veterans
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organizations and on their local military bases or having veterans in their own h.r. departments, that veterans can identify with when they apply for work or just having someone on staff that can help translate the experience of veterans into the work that that company does. time and again big companies like amazon and microsoft or a lot of smaller businesses i've seen tell me these steps make an impact. but beyond those steps it is very clear that more needs to be done. particularly when our veterans' unemployment rates among young veterans ages 18-24 continues to hover around 20%. action has tab taken because -- has tab taken because one in five of our veterans who didn't cpt find a job to support their family. one in five who do not have an income to provide stability. one in five of them who don't have the work to provide them with the self-esteem and pride
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that is so critical to their transition home. this is a problem that manifests itself in homelessness, in broken families and far too often today in our veterans, taking their own lives. it's a problem that neither the veterans themselves nor government alone can solve, but it is also one that we have to do everything we can to address it. and here in the senate that means a bipartisan all hands on deck strategy. and that is exactly what the senator from florida is putting forward. senator nelson has put forward the veterans job corps bill. what this bill does is over the next five years, it will increase training and hiring opportunities for all of our veterans who are using successful job training programs in the country. it's going to help hire qualified veterans as police officers and firefighters and first responders. by the way at a time when 85% of law enforcement agencies had to
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reduce their badges in the last year. it's going to train and hire vierns to restore and protect our national, state, and tribal festivities, our public lands at a time when we face a $10 billion maintenance backlog for our public lands, a backlog i've seen at home penchlly in my home state of washington and because training and hiring our veterans has never seen and never should be an effort that divides us along bipartisan lines, the veterans job corps takes good ideas from both sides of the aisle. in fact, our bill will provide veterans with access to the internet and computers to help conduct job searches at one-stop centers in other locations. this is an idea championed by senator toomey. it's going to help guarantee that our rural and disabled veterans have access to
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employment representatives. this is championed by senator tester who is chairing the senate floor this morning. it's a great idea and we've put it in this bill. it's going to increase transition programs for veterans and their spuses -- spouses, introduced by senator boozman of our committee and it will require consideration of training on active duty when they seek certifications and licenses. that is cosponsored by republicans and democrats alike. this bill says all good ideas are welcome because our veterans need all the help they can get. and it's fully paid for in a bipartisan way. it's been endorsed most recently by the national association of police organizations, but there are also a lot of veterans' service organizations that stand behind this bill as well. and they do so because they know that helping veterans find employment is absolutely critical to meeting many of the
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challenges that they face when they come home. you know, mr. president, our veterans don't ask for a lot. oftentimes they come home and don't even acknowledge their own sacrifices. my own father never talked about his time fighting in world war ii. in fact, i never saw his purple heart or knew that he had a wallet with shrapnel in it or a diary that detailed his time in combat until after he died and my family gathered to sort out his belongings. but, you know, mr. president, our veterans shouldn't have to ask. we should provide for them. when my father's generation came home from the war they came home to opportunity. my father came home to a community that supported him. he came home to college and a job. it was a job that gave him pride and a job that helped him start his family and one that, of course, ultimately led me to starting my own. that's the legacy of opportunity. this senate in a bipartisan way
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has lived up to for today's veterans. so i urge our colleagues to build on the successes we have had in passing bipartisan veterans' employment legislation. veterans returning home from across the country are watching us, and they certainly do not have time have time to let politics block their path to a job that will help them serve in this economy. surely this is a bill that is something that we can show them that we can come together on no matter how close or far away we are from an election. thank you, mr. president, and i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call: a senator: mr. president, i ask that the quorum call be lifted. the presiding officer: without objection. mrs. murray: i ask that the senate recess until 2:15 under the previous order.
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under the previous order, the senate will stand in reses is until 2:15 p.m.
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[background sounds]
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[bells ringing] [background noises]
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[background noises] [playing of "taps"]
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[background noises] [background noises] >> presidential can diet mitt romney today released a statement part of which says on this most somber day those that should attack us know we're united one nation under god in our determination to stop them
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and stand tall for peace and freedom at home and across the world. later today mitt romney will be in reno, nevada nevada. he will speak before the national guard association and is expected to talk about defense policy we'll have live coverage of that, 2:15 eastern on our companion network c-span3. more road to the white house coverage later this afternoon, bill clinton on two-day in florida. he will be in miami at a campaign rally set to get underway at 4:30 eastern. also live on c-span3. you saw the moment of silence at the white house. we take you now to the penalty gone sair ceremony. flight 77. president obama was there this morning as defense secretary leon panetta and chairman of the joint chiefs, general martin dempsey.
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>> at this time, president barack obama accompanied by mrs. michelle obama, secretary leon panetta, and general martin dempsey, and mrs. didi dempsey will pay special tribute to the lives lost at the pentagon and on american airlines flight 77 on september 11th, 2001. by placing a wreath at the zero age line of the pentagon memorial. [playing of "taps"]
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[background noises]
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[background sounds] [background sounds]
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>> please direct your attention to the pentagon memorial flagpole to your right in honor of patriot day and in remembrance of the 184 lives lost at the pentagon. the flag is flying at half-staff. ladies and gentlemen, the national anthem of the united states. [playing of "the star-spangled banner"]
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♪ . >> ladies and gentlemen, the united states army chief of chaplains, major general donald rutherford. >> let us pray. oh, god, our refuge in strength, our every present help in trouble, remember the events of september 11th, 2001, we pray for all those
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who grief today. for those who witnessed and survived the attacks, those who came to rescue, to save and protect, for all the souls who were lost, remembering especially those whose names are eternally etched into this memorial. on a day when the worst was visited upon our nation, our spirits are forever inspired by the acts of heroic valor that we witnessed at ground zero, in a pennsylvania field, and here at the pentagon. we pray for the selfless men and women who have been called to defend our country, in the ways of freedom both at home and abroad. inspired by their legacy, we ask for continued courage and strength of spirit to faithfully serve our military and our nation. we are thankful, divine healer, that in our time of loss you do not abandon us to our grief. pull out pour out your
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healing balm upon us, that we may do your work showing peace with justice, offering forgiveness and building community and walking with others in abundant life for all. hear us, lord god, as we join in prayer this day. in your holy name we pray. amen. >> amen. >> 11 years ago at 9:37 a.m. the pentagon was attacked. please join us in observing a moment of silence to remember those who perished. [moment of silence]
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>> the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, general martin dempsey. >> mr. president, mrs. obama, mr. secretary, distinguished guests, good morning and thank you all for being here. my wife did. idi and i offer a special welcome to family and friends of those we lost on these ground 11 years ago today. one of them was chief warrant officer william ruth. his memorial bench of granite and steel sits in the last row in front of me, 7th in from the far route. bill serveds a a marine in vietnam flying helicopters. after the war he became a social studies teacher and joined the army national guard, serving in the first gulf war as a medevac pilot. he was loved by his students. they were proud of his service and moved by his deep commitment to them and to our nation.
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one student said, he opened up my eyes and my heart to the world. many others inspired by his example became teachers, nurses, firefighters, and several followed him into the life of the military. bill retired from the classroom after nearly 30 years and returned to serve in the pentagon. there is no doubt among his colleagues he lost his life that fateful morning because in the middle of the chaos, he stopped to help somebody. there were thousands like bill that day. they remind us that life takes on meaning only as the causes to which we attach ourselves have meaning. that in the end we become what we are through some cause we make our own. september 11th will always stand apart from other days, not because of what we say up here about service and sacrifice, courage and character, of course it is all you have those things but also because of what those things say about all of us, all americans. so today as we remember the
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184 lives that ended here and all who perished in new york and in somerset county, pennsylvania, let us commit ourselves to the ideals for which they lived and in which they believed. let us also honor the generation they inspired to step forward to defend our nation, a generation who fought in iraq, and who still fight in afghanistan. let us rededicate our own lives to the cause of giving back to our great nation. for as one of our nation's leaders said, the strength of our democracy has always rested on the willingness of those who believe in its values and in their will to serve. to give something back to this country. and now, it is my privilege to introduce you to the man who spoke those words and who lives them every day, our secretary of defense, leon panetta. [applause] >> mr. president, mrs. obama,
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general dempsey, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, and in particular the family members who lost a loved one here on 9/11. 11 years ago on a morning very much like this terrorists attacked the symbols of american strength. our economy and our commerce. our military might, and our democracy. and took the lives of citizens from more than 90 countrys. it was the worst terrorist attack on america in our history. today people gather, across the united states, around
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the world, to remember the tragic events of 9/11. some take part in ceremonies like this. others spend time in quiet reflection and prayer, and all of us take a moment to remember again where we were at that fateful moment. here together as one family, we pause to honor and to pray, and to remember 184 lives lost at the pentagon. more than 2700 killed in lower manhattan, and the 40 who perished in that field in pennsylvania on flight 93. these victims, families, remember those who are lost
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as mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters. the family members here today know that the entire nation, the entire nation joins you in mourning the loss of your loved ones. we are honored by your presence and just as your loved once are heroes forever, so are all of you. today we also recognize and remember other heroes, those first-responders who rushed to the scene behind me into the fire and chaos to save lives and helped in any way possible. we owe all of you a very special debt. we appreciate all you did to provide aid and comfort to those who needed it so badly. our thoughts also turn to the survivors.
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on that bright, sunny tuesday morning, you reported to work with no idea about the tragedy that lay ahead. suddenly this building was rocked by an explosion. after the impact many of you risked your lives to help others. many can remember the smell of the rubble and jet fuel. and some of you knew the victims as office mates and friends and knew their familis. lick 60 years before a nation at peace suddenly found itself at war. for all of you and for every american, this memorial is a permanent place for prayer, and for remembrance. and it is a fitting tribute to the lives of those who
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cruelly taken from us, the passengers and crew of flight 77, the military and civilian personnel working here at the pentagon. it is a fitting tribute to all of those who were lost. yesterday i had the opportunity to visit another memorial, the flight 93 national memorial in shanksville. i was reminded of those horrible moments after the hijacking, when the passengers and crew were able to make frantic calls to speak to their loved ones for the last time. they knew what was at stake, and yet they decided to fight back, together they took swift and decisive action to stop yet another attack targeted at the
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nation's capitol. that spirit of selflessness, that it is of determination and courage is the enduring legacy of 9/11. it inspires our nation. it inspires our military. to insure that such an attack will never happen again. it inspires us to never forget those who perished, to defend our homeland, to defend our ideals, to send a resounding message to our enemies, that no one attacks the united states of america and gets away with it. for today we also recall that out of the shock, and sadness of 9/11, came a new sense of unity and resolve. that this would not happen again. it inspired a fierce determination to fight back and protect our way of life.
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in trying to attack our strengths the terrorists unleashed our greatest strength, the spirit and the will of americans to fight for their country. millions of americans responded. a whole new and great generation stepped forward to serve in uniform, to fight this war on terrorism. they bled on distant battlefields. they relentlessly pursued those who would do us harm. they put their lives on the line, to give all of us a safer and better future. and to bring those behind these attacks to justice. because of their sacrifices, because they were willing to fight and to die, because of their dedication, our nation is stronger and safer today
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than on 9/11. we never gave up the search for bin laden. we successfully brought him to justice. we decimated the leadership of al qaeda. we have them on the run, and we have made it difficult for them to plan and conduct another 9/11 attack. and while that group is still a threat, we dealt them a heavy blow, and we will continue to fight them in yemen, in somalia, in north africa, wherever they go, to make sure they have no place to hide. our troops denied safe haven to al qaeda and its allies in afghanistan and they're fighting so that afghanistan can secure and govern itself. make no mistake, we will continue to pursue and fight our enemies wherever they go, wherever they hide, wherever they try to find refuel, we will never stop until we
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have made sure that america is safe. on this day of solemn remembrance, let us renew a solemn pledge, to those who died on 9/11 and their familis. it is a pledge we also make to all of those who put their lives on the line and who paid a heavy price for the last 11 years of war. our pledge is to keep fighting for a safer and stronger future. our pledge is to insure that america always remains a government of, by, and for all people. that pledge, that legacy, makes clear no one, no one who died on that terrible day 11 years ago died in vain. they died for a stronger america.
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this morning we are honored by the presence of our military and civilian leaders and we are particularly honored by the presence of the president and mrs. obama. this president has led our efforts in this fight and i have honored, been honored to serve with him. it is now my great honor to introduce our commander-in-chief, ladies and gentlemen, president barack obama. [applause] >> secretary panetta, general dempsey, members of our armed forces and most importantly to the families, survivors and loved ones of those we lost. michelle and i are humbled to join you again on this solemn anniversary. today we remember a day that
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began like so many others. those arrived to school and commutes to work, early flights and familiar routines, quick hugs and quiet moments. it was a day like this one, a clear blue sky, but a sky that would soon be filled with clouds of smoke and prayers of a nation shaken to its core. even now all these years later it is easy for those of us to lived through that day to close our eyes and to find ourselves back there and back here. back when grief crashed over us like an awful wave, when americans everywhere held each other tight, seeking the reassurance that the world we knew wasn't crumbling under our feet.
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11 times we have marked another september 11th come and gone. 11 times we have paused in remembrance, in reflection, in unity, and in purpose. this is never an easy day but it is especially difficult for all of you, the families of nearly 3,000 innocents who loved their -- lost their lives. your mothers and fathers, your husbands and wives, your sons and your daughters, they were taken from us suddenly and far too soon. to you and your families the rest of us can not begin to imagine the pain you have endured these many years. we will never fully understand how difficult it has been for to you carry on, to summon that strength and to rebuild your lives. but no matter how many years
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pass, no matter how many times we come together on this hallowed ground, know this, that you will never be alone. your loved ones will never be forgotten. they will endure in the hearts of our nation because through their sacrifice they helped us make the america we are today. an america that has emerged even stronger. most of the americans we lost that day had never considered the possibility that a small band of terrorists halfway around the world could do us such harm. most had never heard the name al qaeda and yet it is because of their sacrifice that we've come together and dealt a crippling blow to the organization that brought evil to our shores. al qaeda's leadership has been devastated. usama bin laden will never threaten us again. our country is safer and our people are resilient.
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it's true that the majority of those who died on september 11th had never put on our country's uniform and yet they inspired more than five million americans, members of the nine 11 generation, to wear that uniform over the last decade. these men and women have done everything that we have asked. today the war in iraq is over. in afghanistan we're training afghan security forces and forging a partnership with the afghan people and by the end of 2014 the longest war in our history will be over. meanwhile countless civilians have opened their hearts to our troops, our military families and our veterans. 11 years ago memorial services were held for americans of different races and creeds, backgrounds and beliefs, and yet instead of turning us against each other tragedy has brought us together.
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i've always said that our fight is with al qaeda and its affiliates, not with islam or any other religion. this country was built as a beacon of freedom and tolerance. that's what's made us strong. now, and forever. finally when those innocent souls were taken from us they left behind unfulfilled and, unfulfilled work and tasks that remain undone. and that's why on a day when others sought to bring this country down we chose to build it up with a national day of service and remembrance. scripture tells us do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good. there's no better way to honor the best in those who died than by discovering the best in ourselves. this anniversary allows us
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to renew our faith that even the darkest night gives way to a brighter dawn. today we can come here to the pentagon and touch these names and kneel beside a building where a single stone still bears the scars of that fire. we can visit the field of honor in pennsylvania and remember the heroes who made it safer. we can see water cascading into the footprints of the twin towers and gaze up to a new tower rising above the new york skyline. even though we may never be able to fully lift the burden carried by those left behind we know that somewhere a son is growing up with his father's eyes and a daughter has her mother's laugh. living reminders that those who died are with us still. so as painful as this day is and always will be, it leaves us with a lesson, that no single event can
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ever destroy who we are. no act of terrorism can ever change what we stand for. and instead we recommit ourselves to the values that we believe in, holding firmly without waivering to the hope that we con fest -- confess. that is the commitment we reaffirm today. that's why when the history books are written the true legacy of 9/11 will not be one of fear or hate or division. it will be a safer world, a stronger nation, and a people more united than ever before. god bless the memories of those we lost and god bless these united states of america. [applause]
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>> we continue to follow some of your comments on facebook. loretta says i wish we could say we are better prepared but that would be a lie the i believe 9/11 made most of us pray including nonchristians, and also one from, from george who says that on 9/11 we promised to chase al qaeda wherever they go. today mr. panetta reiterated that promise however we are not doing much to chase al qaeda from syria. to the contrary we're allowing saudi arabia and qatar to arm them from turkey. more of your comments throughout the day. always feel free to post your thoughts at facebook.com/c-span. our specific question today, how has america changed? some political coverage coming up this afternoon. road to the white house coverage. mitt romney will be in reason know, nevada. he is expected to make some comments september 11.
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he is also there to talk about defense policy. he is speaking to the national guard association, live at 2:15 on c-span3. later in the afternoon former president bill clinton on the campaign trail for president obama in florida. one of two stops. we'll have his stop in miami. that is live at 4:30.
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members gathered to sing god bless america on the actual date, september 11th, 2001.
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[inaudible conversations] members of the house and senate, capitol police, staff and members of the community, thank you for joining us today to mark the 11th anniversary of the events of september 11th, 2001. i invite everyone to participate in the singing of the national anthem which will be led by the army master sergeant antonio giuliani. >> ♪ and oh say can you see by the dawn's early light what so proudly wehailed at the twilight's last gleaming and whose brought stars with and the
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bright stars through the perilous fight o're the ramparts we watched were so galantly streaming and the rockets red glare the bombs bursting in air gave proof through the night that our flag was still there oh say does that star spangled banner yet wave oer the land of the free when and the home of
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the brave [applause] >> let us pray. god of heaven and earth, we give you thanks for giving us another day. today we remember the day begun in terror and violence and ended in a heroic effort and courage. we mourn those whose lives were snatched from them and wish comfort to those left behind who strive to cope with their loss. may you, god, give them peace and healing. we thank you again for the almost universal international response to the great american tragedy, which all the world
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recognize as theirs as well. all of your children of good will could see the horror of actions by men who would presume to act in your name, causing so much death and destruction. may your spirit of truth and peace and justice continue to show the hearts of people of all faiths, races and nations. help us to recognize your creative love in the lives of all who share this beautiful planet. be present with us this day as we gather again on our capitol steps. less than men and women who serve this great nation and those that serve in the senate and house of representatives. united then and united today in our shared citizenship, they
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have been given great responsibility five their fellow americans. made their show of unity offer a hopeful future of concerted effort to do what is best for the united states. madd confident in the knowledge that all americans stand behind them and their common efforts to forge legislation that will reflect the resilient greatness of the nation and building a vibrant economy into a safe and secure future. may all that is done in this day and in the many days to come before your great honor and glory, amen. >> today we come together once again to remember and reflect with reverence and with respect
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because whenever we speak of september 11, 2001, we tread on sacred ground. on this anniversary, the faults of the nation remain with the innocent americans we lost, their families and loved ones with the first responders who arrived on the scene to rescue others in danger and stayed at ground zero to search for survivors and remains. on this day our solemn pledge remains clear to never forget those who perished on 9/11, to always give voice to those silenced for every 11 years ago, and to draw inspiration from the families of the victims'. the memory of 9/11 calls to mind the words etched into the walls of the memorial stadium in baltimore to honor our men and women in uniform from world part to. the time will not dim the glory of their deeds. the same can be said of the
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heroes and the victims of 9/11. the same can be said of their families, which channeled their grief into action to make america safer, whose commitment of time and generosity of spirit have given all of us strength and made our country stronger. indeed, time will never dim the memory of those who perished, the images of destruction and despair, the moment of pain and anguish, and will never dim the american people's spirit of unity in the wake of the attacks. time will never diminish the courage of our police, firefighters and all the first responders and with the 9/11 bill now all of the land, our country will continue to stand by them, indeed as well as in work. time has left the memories of 9/11 emblazoned on our hard for more than a decade. on this anniversary, and in the years to come, time will continue to tell the true story of 9/11, how the 9/11 families
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turned a national tragedy into a time of unity. how our country came together with results and with hope. may god bless the memories of the victims and the families of 9/11. may god bless their families and children again and again, and may god continue to bless the united states of america. >> more than a decade later, most of us still remember 9/11 like it was yesterday. the initial confusion, the horrifying realization of what was happening, the watching, the waiting, the grief, anger, the
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result. and we remember how worried some people were about what the tax would do to america. what a weekend us -- wouldn't it weaken in the world, what it weaken at home? what we stand up? what we shrink? 11 years later we can say with certainty and pride 9/11 didn't reveal the weakness of america, it revealed a great mess in america -- greaness in america. in the first moment after the attacks, we saw the courage of the first responders. in the days and weeks that followed, we saw the good news and the generosity of the volunteers who descended on new york. as the months turned into years,
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monuments for dedicated, miti buildings rose again at the world trade center site, and of course, we watched with admiration and gratitude the attacked and the armed forces and in our intelligence community. we honor them today, too. thanks to their service and their sacrifice, america is a safer place. many who were responsible for the 9/11 attacks have been killed or captured many of those are on the gun he. ours is the greatest fighting force the world has ever known. out of the great evil, we have seen greatness and goodness from our country and from our countrymen. that is why we can now mark this solemn anniversary not simply
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with pain, sorrow, but with a renewed pride in our nation. and in the unbending confidence in the resilience and goodness of its people. in her darkest hours, america always summon the courage and the strength to persevere and to prevail. we now know that 9/11 was no different. and here's why. because as americans, we believe that every person counts. that's why we are still haunted by the faces of those who died, by the hopes and dreams that were extinguished. by the families and friendships that were shattered on that crisp september morning 11 years ago. and that's why we are determined to vindicate their lives. and remembering those we lost on 9/11, we testify to our shared believe that each and every one of them was irreplaceable.
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we renew our commitment to live lives worthy of their memory. and we pledge, once again, to do whatever it takes to keep america safe from those who still wish to do less -- us harm. >> it was 11 years ago today on the crystal clear morning, much like today, that terrorists attacked our nation. but the attack wasn't just when planes hit buildings, it was attack against the american spirit and the solemn freedom and democracy. they were determined not only to take lives, but also to break the nations will. although the terrible, why turned upside down it left a
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strength and power, it brought us together as a nation in the fight against terror. in the years since, we've crippled al qaeda. we've brought to justice the world's most dangerous terrorist, osama bin laden, and our nation has begun to heal from the devastating morning. but we will never forget that bright september morning. we will never forget the thousands of innocent souls lost in pennsylvania virginia and the workers living and dead who rushed into the twin towers knowing they might never come out. we will never forget the sacrifice of the brave men and women of the nation's armed forces, state department intelligence community. who dedicated more than a decade to make america safer, and the world safer. we will never forget the spirit of unity and determination that carried us through the dark days after that cowardly attack and 11 years that followed. and we will never get to the way
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the nation fought back against the uncertainty and fear and emerged stronger than ever before. >> cardinal edward who was the archbishop of new york on september 11, 2001 talks about going over to st. vincent hospital that morning. as he helped receive the injured, the archbishop eagan found himself standing with two doctors, one of whom was visibly shaken. it turns out a family member of his was in the towers on the high floor. cardinal eagan asked the doctor if he would like to go somewhere and talk. the doctor said no, your eminence, i am a doctor, and this is my place.
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everyone, no matter their station, everyone stood their ground. everyone kept their place. the professionals who did their duty who ran in so that others could runout. the patriots that banded together in the sky over shanks -- shanksville to save the capitol and these steps. the volunteers that raised their hands and said i will go and i will fight overseas and perilous conditions. the americans that lined up to give blood and said what can i do? and the people on their knees seeking god's strength and guidance. everyone kept their place.
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to sum up such courage in the midst of such a loss, to be confronted with such evil and not give a thought to retreat, that is the heart and the core of the american people. that lies beneath our daily lives. every generation through her sacrifice has preserved the blessings of liberty and freedom. and if we ever falter, it will be because we forgot what we learned in hardship. today we listened and we vow never to forget, to celebrate the greater good that comes from serving one another and standing shoulder to shoulder and to carry on, to media met challenges and to complete the unfinished work. so we are americans, and this is
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our place. join me in bowing our heads for a moment of silence for those that we honor and remember today let us bow for the eternal. made the memory of hit 9/11 remind us that you are our refuge and strength, a very present help in the time of trouble.
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therefore, we will not fear of pothier to be removed and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea. may hour gratitude for your standing providence motivate us to strive for greater unity, to be more aware of our mortality, and to work to leave this world better than we found it. continue to bless and keep us. make your face to shine upon us and be gracious unto us. lift the light of your continents upon us, and give us your piece now and always. we pray in your sovereign name,
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amen. >> please join me in a singing god bless america. ♪ ♪ god bless america ♪ and that i loved ♪ stand beside her ♪ and dieter her ♪ with the light from of ♪ from the mountains to the prairie is ♪ ♪ to the oceans white with foam ♪ god bless america ♪ my home sweet home
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♪ god bless america ♪ foam ♪ [applause] >> thank you all for coming. ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ the congressional commemoration from earlier today of 9/11. part of our coverage of the events surrounding that day. we are also registering your reaction to the events of 9/11 through your speech tweets.
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the u.s. senate is set to come back at 2:15 eastern for more work on the veterans jobs bill. we will have live coverage when they return at again, 2:15 eastern on c-span2. until then, more on the anniversary of 9/11 from this morning's washington journal. >> a member of the intelligence committee armed services committee vice chairman as well, and i know one area that you focus a lot on is cybersecurity. with the president announcing this new executive on that issue, are we safe when it comes to a potential cyberattack? >> guest: no. and i have not seen the executive order that apparently is circulating. but we are clearly not safe. sometimes i don't think we have to be historical about it, but we have to be realistic. and it affects our national security, our economic security, and there are a series of common steps measures we can take.
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and the house passed four of them back in may. so i'm hopeful that sometime between now and the end of the year the senate will at least take up with the house has done if they can improve it, great. but at least begin to make progress in making our country safer and the cyberspace. >> host: why is that a big deal? why should people pay attention to that? why should a government pay attention to this area? >> guest: well, one reason is cyber underlines everything in our country now. every time you felt that the pump, you are involved in cyberspace. every, you know, it's not just your computers at home, it is our electricity, all the infrastructure around us is now connected in some way to cyberspace. so, when you are so dependent upon cyberspace, we are also vulnerable to potential attacks. by nation states, by criminals, you know, that try to get your
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bank account information and social security number every day. also terrorists. and we know that terrorists are actively looking at vulnerabilities so they can attack us through cyberspace. again it doesn't mean we overreact because most of cyberspace is owned by the private sector, not by the government. so the interaction between the government and private sector is delicate we have to get the right and that is a part of the reason in the house we believe we should take it a step at a time. >> host: what kind of economic damage are we talking about? >> guest: your imagination is probably the limit. if they start fooling with the banking system and manipulate the market, it's hard to imagine the consequences. but all i will say every single day an incredible amount of wealth intellectual property is stolen from computer systems in the united states. the directly the cia says it's
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the greatest transfer of wealth in the world's history. these folks that come in and steal plans, plans for the product, formula, as well as your personal information. so, that's why it affects our economy and our personal well-being as well as the country's security and the infrastructure and things like that. >> host: as a member of the committee where are we vulnerable beyond cybersecurity? >> guest: to a certain extent, we are vulnerable and all sorts of places including -- and that the terrorists keep doing, they keep probing for the vulnerabilities. the continue to look for ways to attack airplanes. they continue to look for ways to hide bombs and blow up large numbers of people. they continue to look for ways to take and use chemical biological or in their dreams even nuclear weapons.
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and so, that takes us back to a lot of the events happening around the world right now. concern about the chemical weapons, for example. keeping them out of the terrorists' hands because what we know for sure in the last 11 years is they can get their hands on them they will use them the of numbers of people that will be affected by an attack like that. >> guest: al qaeda in the pakistan region is diminished. they've been under assault for a decade and they are not like they were. at the same time it's a little bit like a video game that you may remember you hit the big spotter and five take their place. so al qaeda in yemen is there. there are al qaeda franchises in the western sahara, al-shabaab in somalia, the same concern on what is happening in the
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cyanide. so, you've got some smaller entities if you will spread out in more places. so, the incredible work that our military intelligence professionals and law enforcement folks have done over the past 11 years it doesn't end. on the this is the perfect day to take a moment and be grateful for all the work they've done to keep us safe, but also to understand that threats haven't gone away, and we have to continue to rely on them to keep us safe. estimate as president obama deserve credit for what some of his critics have said filing vicious strategy on the war montara or fighting al qaeda? >> guest: he deserves credit for continuing to do what's worked. and as i say, keeping pressure
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on the core al qaeda and afghanistan and pakistan has been successful, some of the of the techniques used around the world have been successful. i think it is a different thing when you -- not knowing this personally, but i think when you step into the oval office and you have responsibilities for keeping the american people safe, some of the things you may have set on the campaign trail may have to fadeaway. so i of disagreements with a variety of things this administration has done in this area. but, i think the things the continued despite the campaign promises has been helpful. >> guest: >> host: the u.s. to designate haqqani as a terrorist group. what is the network and why, what is the threat? >> guest: the haqqani network is based in the tribal area of pakistan and transit in afghanistan and pakistan. they are some of the most deadly
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fighters. they are responsible for some of the most deadly attacks against our troops and all others in afghanistan. there is somewhat separate but connected entity to al qaeda. the point of this helps to reduce the funds when they are designated as a terrorist organization. it helps make it less likely that others will have interactions with them and makes it a little easier to target them. >> host: so the rules of engagement change when they become a terrorist group? >> guest: it does somewhat with the sorts of economic and other sorts of diplomatic pressures encourage others to use. so really this designation is an acknowledgment of the facts on the ground. it's not a huge change. the fact is that they are responsible for some of the most deadly attacks in the afghan pakistan region recently.
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so, i don't think it's important to call them what they are. >> host: senator new texas you are up first. go ahead. >> first i would like to say happy anniversary to my wife is our 20 if anniversary today. but my question is it's more understanding that we are using the united states troops on the borders to work for the law in force the agencies how does that affect? >> guest: if i can take a second and wish my niece is happy birthday it is also there 20 of happy birthday. while we are at it. 9/11 is kind of a strange day to have a birthday or anniversary. we have struggled with this issue as a country since especially 9/11. what is the appropriate role of the mother to me in helping to safeguard our borders? what we have generally done is use the guard and reserve forces
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and use them in dhaka and support positions that have not been patrolling borders with guns on their hit its upper and that's been left to the law enforcement folks and i think that is certainly the traditional differentiation of responsibilities that we have had in this country. at the same time, i think we have to keep our eyes open and our mind alert to a potential increase in danger coming especially on the southern border with the drug cartels and others who for example there were trying to recruit drug cartels to conduct assassinations in the united states, so they would a point where we need a greater degree of military involvement. but that is certainly the more we can provide the resources to mexico and have the resources in quoting unef border patrol people, by the way, and i have a bone to pick with the border
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patrol as they are closing offices across texas and other places but the point is putting enough resources, law enforcement resources on the border backed up with military technology and support i think is the appropriate role at this point. >> host: virginia. james, democratic scholar. >> caller: yes i was just wondering what homeland security was doing about the white supremacist groups, domestic terrorism. timothy was one of the worst right-wing terrorists and you never mentioned him. it's amazing. >> guest: he gets mentioned a lot partly as an example of what one individual can do in the destruction and the deaf that he can create. a law enforcement fbi justice department's role to investigate
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those domestic terrorism, homeland security is more responsible for guarding our borders, northern, southern people coming by water and people coming by air as well as a lot of coordination with local law enforcement. so they have some law enforcement responsibilities, but if you are talking about giving and investigating a group you think may -- >> host: embrey to jump in because we need to go to the white house where they are going to do a moment of silence we want to listen and watch and come back to the discussion. [background noise]
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♪ ♪ ♪
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[background noise] >> a moment of silence this morning at the white house with the president and the first lady. you heard the bells rang at 8:46 eastern time when they were struck by their plan the 11 years ago on the september 11th 2001. nearly 3,000 americans died that day with the attacks of the world trade center, and the attacks of the pentagon here in washington. our cameras are up in new york where the world trade center memorial service today. also there on the screen you can
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see the pentagon. the cameras there as well. and we will bring you coverage of the 9/11 remembrance ceremonies in washington and new york today. c-span.org for more details. at the table mr. mac thornberry, republican of texas and a member of the intelligence arm services committee as well having our discussion here about where we are at 11 years later. >> guest: the thing that takes me back to that day i was at the pentagon. i had breakfast with secretary rumsfeld along with a few other members. i remember very well him receiving the note saying the plane had hit the world trade center. so we decide what we need to get out of there. he has got things to do. so i drove back across the bridge to the capitol when the second plane hit the world trade center. back to my office in the capitol, just when i got their
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police were running through saying get out, get out, there is another one coming for us. and so there were a lot of people in washington that day that remember people just poured out into the streets, gridlock and so forth >> host: >> guest: but i also remember finally turning into our little cul-de-sac once i had gathered my children and every house had a an american flag flying that afternoon. and so, i think today is important to remember the victims, absolutely. it's also important to remember the courage of the people on that plane in pennsylvania who decided they were just not going to be hopeless victims and took matters into their own hands. and then have the courage and sacrifice of all the military intelligence professionals, law enforcement who had stopped countless numbers of attacks in the 11 years since. sometimes we have been lucky. the bomb in "new york times" square didn't work right. the underwear bomber's mom just didn't work right.
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a lot of times we are really good and we ought to be grateful. >> host: we shall also mention that the much as two sets because the six massachusetts governor mitt romney will be in reno nevada today. he will be talking to the national guard's annual conference and he has as well put out a statement about the attacks calling for the remembrance on this day. five coverage 2:15 on c-span's free of governor romney's the five top. republican and san diego. go ahead. >> caller: good morning. >> host: good morning. >> caller: - understand that the state department is now funding al qaeda and syria. would you like to comment on that please? >> guest: i don't think so. i do not believe that any u.s. tax dollars are at least intentionally going to fund any affiliate of al qaeda or terrorists who wish to do less
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harm. you can't say that any dollar and some roundabout way don't get into the wrong hands but i don't think that's true. >> host: massachusetts. gabrielle, independent. are you with us? one last call for gabrielle. i'm going to move on. new orleans, tony democratic collar. good morning, tony. >> caller: good morning. i would like to thank the congressman for his service. i am a veteran myself. i was one of the first to deploy to afghanistan during 2001. but i question specifically is this. you said that you disagree with some of the things president obama has done on the terrorist side, and i want you to expand on that, because he has had some tremendous success and his four years where the killing of osama bin laden and the taking down of the larger al qaeda leaders
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coming and i wanted to know what you did disagree with that he has done on his watch. thank if you. >> guest: thank you for your service, and again, generally i think that there is way too much credit, and especially credit that politicians try to take for our success. a lot of the successes that we have had in the last 11 years have been because of people like you come and the people who support you as well as law enforcement and other folks. this is particularly the day to keep that in mind. there are a number of things i would disagree with. for example, everything that we have been through about closing guantanamo saying we were going to try some of those people in new york city and so forth has caused so much delay that we still haven't been able to try. so that has been a mottled mess and hasn't been helpful to the
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national security. i think it is a mistake to put a specific date saying that we are going to be out of afghanistan on a particular date. i know governor romney generally agrees with that date, but that is a mistake he tells your enemies with how long they have to wait. i think it is a tremendous mistake to continue to investigate some of our intelligence professionals after they have been investigated thoroughly by everybody that you could imagine and there was in the past couple of weeks or so they finally said okay. there's nothing there. there's three examples, but at the same time as you point out, when he's continued the things that were i think that he should be given credit. >> host: are we safer now that al qaeda is decimated from the top down? >> guest: we are safer as a country and largely that is
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because we are more alert and better organized and better prepared. as i mentioned, certainly al qaeda of the top is not anything like it was. but there are some added problems that come from having all of those little al qaeda affiliate's around the world that are innovative, the greatest threats that we have seen in the recent times have come from al qaeda and yemen. so it's kind of like you have to keep bopping yet on the head wherever it allows. >> host: speaking of mistakes, some have said that it was a mistake that governor romney didn't mention troops come afghanistan in his convention speech. what was your reaction? >> guest: i don't buy that. he gave the day before a major address to the american legion where he focused on nothing but the troops and the national security. he did mention the importance of the troops in the speech to be the speeches of the whole campaign. i think that he fully
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understands the importance of the military intelligence professionals and keeping us safe. i have no qualms about that. >> host: florida. >> caller: hello? >> host: good morning, sir. you're on the air. >> caller: yes, i wanted to ask the >> guest: why we aren't even tougher than we are. i mean, more murderers. i can't understand dealing with these people. that's my question. >> guest: and by understand particularly on the day like this when we remember that 3,000 people were killed by these folks. the senator was just talking about this in the previous segment to be the challenge is we've got to take steps to keep americans reasonably safe without losing the free nature of our society, and the truth is
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we have been pretty messy in sorting out the path to do that over the last 11 years. we saw one may be a little far to the other. but we are navigating our way through. so, i understand what you are saying. one thing i would add though, we talked briefly about the cybersecurity a few minutes ago. it's actually important not to wait until your attack to than react. one of the lessons of 9/11 is we should have done more to help prevent it to collect information on these folks and taking the action ahead of time to present something is a lot better than trying to come back and retaliate after. i think that we are dealing with another example of that kind of situation in cyberspace. >> host: reauthorize and fisa, the 1978 law that allows the u.s. intelligence agencies to conduct physical and electronic surveillance.
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they said that the bill traveling in the senate in the democratic caucus. what about on the house? do you have reservations? >> guest: of course. remember we are talking about the amendment act. when it passed in 2008, the democrats controlled congress, and it got about 300 votes in the house. the reauthorization queen, just like it is from past the intelligence committee 17 to nothing to it succumbing you know, this is one of the -- the obama administration says just renew it. don't play games with it. and so, it is somewhat discouraging to me that they seem to be playing some games. we have such overwhelming bipartisan support in the past as well as oversight especially in the intelligence community and the house we can at least get that done. we are going to vote on it this week in the house.
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so the question is what happens in the senate, and that is where i say they don't play games with it because again, our intelligence and law enforcement professionals need these tools to continue to operate as they have in 2008 with these tools to help keep us safe >> host: gabrielle, massachusetts. go ahead. >> caller: basically what i'm seeing is a system that is interconnected. private business, government, security companies. basically what we are doing here is we are creating a weapon against citizens around the world to be monitored. we just lost the habeas corpus. we have the patriot act, and don't say that we are not protecting terrorists, because aig was covering insuring ahmadinejad so don't act like
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you're trying to protect the country when in fact you couldn't even get the criminals out of wall street let alone the bankers that got away with the money and you've been raising social security so what are you talking about? >> host: congress and? >> guest: a variety of topics but i think a couple points. one, there are lots of rumors and e-mails going around that i would just encourage everybody to take with a grain of salt. check the facts and see if you can get some confirmation of some of the things that maybe you have heard. for example on the fisa am i conduct that the house will vote on this week there is court supervision of the way that works and that is only targeted to have any surveillance against americans you have to have a specific court order to do that and the judge has to be convinced there is a reason to
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do that. so we will hear from both sides to many generality is based on my feet the misimpressions and that is not helpful in finding the appropriate balance between security and freedom that we all want. pascrell american hero on a atwater says where does the constitution authorized the secret court? >> guest: well, article 3 allows the congress to set up the courts and tribunals. basically the supreme court of the other federal courts are subject to converse. we can do away with them or we can create others. so, to deal with some of these difficult challenges in the national security that use classified evidence where in addition privacy issues sometimes come to the floor then there is the fisa court that is
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independent financial government some judges who take time to understand these issues but yet provide independent authorization for with the organizations do. i think it's working pretty well. >> host: we have a treat for you. if the republicans are concerned about security, then why is the house trying to dismantle the tsa? >> guest: there are a variety of opinions about the tsa. i had one of my colleagues last night will to me but the experience he had with the tsa trying to get to washington. they picked the busiest time of the airport to train new people and he ended up missing his wife. it is irritating for all of us. what we are going to have the airport security the difference of opinion as whether they have to be several employees or whether they could be
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contractors. whether we can save money by having the contractors. there are a variety of opinions about how best to do that. but that is one of the examples that i think we most of us have livethrough on trying to find the appropriate balance between security and not invading too much of our personal freedom and we are still working our way through that with new technologies and new procedures. >> host: independent color you are on the air in texas. go ahead. >> caller: we are always talking about the war on the terror and it's a tactic used by the nations against each other. you can look at the terror that we used in the second world war against germany, japan. there's only the two types of war. one is courageous against the wicked and the other if you look at why he attacked us there's two reasons. 19 involved in the middle east
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and palestine and the other because he perceived this as a wicked nation. if you look at the morality of the nation i would call it a very righteous nation the weekend fighting the wicked. >> guest: the first point i would agree with and i don't think that you hear me saying the war on terror. i agree it is a tactic. it is a struggle against terrorists who kill innocent people indiscriminately to advance some agenda. now i completely disagree with your second point, however. i think that this is a struggle of the good as imperfect as we are against the wicked, and i understand bin laden and others use various justifications for what they do. i think that is primarily to motivate their troops. if one doesn't work they will
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find another. but it is an agenda, a political agenda if you will to reconstruct the caliphate and ultimately all that. but i just got to say as an elected representative of the people, the most heartening thing to me is the essential goodness of our people. so i completely disagree with your point. we have our problems. i understand. but the essentials goodness of the american people has continued over the last 11 years, and if the government can match it, we will be greatly improved as a country. >> host: california next. very early morning there with republican. the head. >> caller: how are you doing? >> host: go ahead. >> caller: i have a question about the military. obama wants to minimize the
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church. i'm a u.s. army vet and i made my decision to join the military when i was 14 so my 18th birthday i was in the dewitt minimize and we can't get that back in there is the need for troops that kind of hurts me because i don't want to be a veteran. i want to be back in the military doing my part. i'm just hoping for somebody to strengthen our military troops because it occurs when hundred 12%. >> guest: first things you for your service. it is amazing whaone runs into when you made that decision 11 years ago today to enter the military. and then have served our country with an incredible way. i continue to hear stories about
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that, and that is further evidence citing of the myth of the american people. i share your concerns about reducing the number of troops we have in our military. that is a part of what is at stake and all of these budgets and sequestration's debates that we have in washington right now. and i do think that you see -- not to get off into the campaign to much devotee to see different opinions offered by other candidates. , you have to look at that. it is i guess the bigger point is it is still a dangerous world. we have to have -- we have to get and keep the top quality folks in our military in order to keep us safe. as well as in our intelligence agencies and law enforcement. that is what today is all about. >> host: here is a tweet. why not join delete produce drugs to which illegal crossing across the borders for quick responses to intercede?
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>> guest: i think that we are beginning to use the uav on the border. there is lots of details to work out. how you use them. you don't spy on americans. you know, all of those sort of issues. but i think we are using them and other technologies to better petrol our border, and i think that is going to be the key to keeping us safe. not only on our southern border, which is what we often think the outcome of the northern border, too, which is just gigantic and where we don't have very many people come and as well as our coastlines. i think technology is going to be the key for that. >> host: that is the discussion this morning before the house homeland security subcommittee on how to prevent terrorists from entering into the united states. 10 a.m. this morning house homeland security subcommittee c-span.org with more details about our coverage working at the visa security. give us your take on that. >> guest: i think this part of
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what a lot of folks overlooked. we think about people sneaking across the border. i believe all of the 9/11 hijackers entered the country through airplanes, many of whom had legitimate visas. instruments vary, but a tremendous percentage of the people that were in this country illegally entered legally and stayed beyond their visa. so part of the challenge that we have with immigration and homeland security is to keep track of who comes here, where they go, and make sure that when their visa expires that they leave the country. that is part of the interior enforcement as well as the border security that is going to be essential, as i say, particularly as things deteriorated in mexico and we try to use mexican drug cartels to attack, those are going to increase the importance. >> host: we will go to the line for democrats. josh good morning, josh.
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>> caller: good morning, c-span. it's great to get through to you finally. i want to ask the congressman about the blame game. [inaudible] they were not there with their non-family. if you reinstated the draft, then people like yourself wouldn't be so quick to go ahead and play these blame games. in fact, you probably would not go to the war as often as you do. >> host:? >> guest: that is a lot of silliness there. but i guess the point that we all should agree with is we don't use our troops or other is likely. it puts their lives at risk. today i think it's important to remember the families that have
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lost not only the victims on 9/11, the military and other folks that have lost their lives since then trying to keep us safe. nobody should do that lightly. at the same time you can't stick your head in the sand and say there is no threats and today is a great remembrance of that. >> host: r-texas. >> caller: i've spoken to you personally on this. why are we allowing the satellite officers of the border patrol to be closed. texas? right here where i live you can't get off of the free -- freeway to 277 and go anywhere you want to go in this country. you probably won't even see the department of public safety officer. and we have been screaming for years and years and years for the borders to be controlled after the last amnesty.
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we rolled out to have a tsunami of people coming across our borders. we have to absorb 20% of the mexican population in the last 30 years. and the condra is absolutely refuses to guard our southern border. >> host:? >> guest: that's not true. as a matter of fact, it has been the congress trying to push both bush and obama administration to do more for border security. and i mentioned this a few minutes ago. i and a number of other members of congress have been trying to deal with this proposal with the border patrol wants to close nine different offices. and they say well, they are not right on the border. well, as she was saying, there is a tremendous amount of traffic on our interstates going east and west. and in order to have this sort of enforcement, they're has to be some sort of federal prisons.
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some of the local sheriff found somebody going down the highway with drugs or smuggling people or other things, what do they do with eclectic and put them in jail, but the closest border patrol office is several hundred miles away. it is a real problem. not to get much into this issue but this is something that we are very concerned about because i think you have to have the defense in depth or law enforcement in depth not just stand people are on the borders of this is one of the issues that we are working on >> host: springfield massachusetts. >> caller: hauer you, mr. congressman? >> host: good morning. we are listening to you. >> caller: i've been listening to you all morning and you've given the president no props at all. bush dropped the ball on 9/11
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and stopped. mr. obama claim that all this stuff to michel osama bin laden, took on al qaeda but you give him no props that he did that. everything there george bush was going to do. >> guest: i don't think you've been listening to what i said. i said i feel he deserves credit for continuing the policies that have worked and to take the osama bin laden example specifically, i think the president does deserve credit for issuing the order to go. i think even greater credit belongs to those intelligence professionals that word for years to find it believes that ultimately led to bin laden including the people that went down the dead end and found out where he wasn't and i think the bulk of the credit also goes to the people that carried out the
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mission, the professionalism of those special operations forces that carried it out is just incredible. so you know, again, i think that there is too much politicians trying to take credit for the work that our military intelligence professionals, law enforcement folks to everyday. they are the ones that we start to appreciate today. but the president deserves credit for giving the order to go. who's the democratic collar. good morning. >> caller: good morning. how are you? >> host: just fine. go ahead with your question or comment for the congressman. >> caller: yes, sir. tonight on pbs they are having a special called the question of dhaka. it's on frontline, yet the question is where was god on september 11th. i would like to get your thoughts about faith and god and
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everything and i would also like to invite you to go to the website. it's godislove.org. there is a book that i rode. it's called divine intervention and actually i claimed i co-wrote this book, but if you have any thoughts about where was god on my 9/11. >> guest: i believe he was with the victims and all of us on 9/11. that doesn't mean that he understands why she allowed to happen anymore than we understand why he allowed the holocaust happened. but through tragedy, through incredible evil that can still work good. that is my personal belief. i appreciate your book and maybe you'll get some buyers. >> host: the next call in
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dependent washington, d.c.. go ahead, michael. >> caller: i am calling it's very important that we have intelligence agencies in place. what is dangerous today is we are having politicians carry dangerous -- >> host: what is your example? >> caller: given what is a republican or democrat talking about issues that interest them to easily exploited intelligence for their own good, so what happened is let's look at the example. there we have seen how the intelligence agencies became so strong that they were able to take over the committee's and the justice system as a whole. this could easily interfere in
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the lives of americans in the long run. >> guest: i am not sure that a understand the point. although i will say there is very robust oversight in congress, the house and senate side of the intelligence organizations. not just the intelligence committees. obviously the armed services committee and others overseas. and that is a part of our job. i think that we are unique in the world, and having this independent oversight over intelligence organizations by separate plans for the government. it's one of our strengths and something that i think is important. >> host: speaking out leaking information. i want to get your take on this but no easy day by the navy seal. do you think that jeopardize the seal's work? >> guest: i think it does. and it ads to the culture of talking about their tactics, what they do. and that is very disturbing. >> host: have you read the book?
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>> guest: i have not. i saw the interview on television. i don't think he did a good job. i have read books of other seals. i'm chairman of the subcommittee oversees special operations in the special armed services. and i think that in general, whether it is coming from the white house or the individual members of the military there is way too much talk about how we do things and what happens and that makes the job of the future missions much harder. it needs to stop. >> host: the tapes and the other data that were captured from osama bin laden's compound, is it still benefiting the united states? are we still getting intelligence from it? >> guest: as he indicated there is a tremendous amount of material. i think the bulk of the benefit has been received. and any time -- as time passes anything you can picture becomes less relevant years down the road. but, no question of is tremendous. >> host: congressman, thank you for your time this morning.
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>> guest: you're welcome. expects to gavel back in at 2:15 eastern to a look now at the congressional agenda. >> the politics editor from the washington times. while congress is back after their august break what is the picture like for the lawmakers this week? what is on their agenda? >> in the house they are picking up the whole bunch of different
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bills. the big ones are supposed to be a continuation of government funding for the stopgap measure taken into the next year. and if they don't do anything funding for the government would expire at the end of this month, so they are looking at extending it all the way past the lame-duck session into next year coming essentially taking that all out of the votes going on. and also the extension of the foreign intelligence surveillance act, fisa had is it is known. the dhaka considering whether or not to deal with the for in bill that is always hanging out there. then over in the senate, and they are planning on taking up a veteran's job corps bill, which would create a veteran's job core similar to some of the great depression programs. this is with attorneys veterans and then pushed them into jobs, government jobs like firefighters and police and also conservation work. >> you mentioned the timber refunding, the continuing resolution to keep the government funding. is their agreement between the
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parties and both chambers on the short term funding? >> there is. normally this is a huge fight. this time around the leaders of the democratic leaders have been in the senate and republicans in the house actually a couple months ago announced they were going to take this all. they had agreed -- we call the short term, it's actually pretty long-term extension that expands into next year, and they have already agreed on the outlines of that. they are still working on the details. but they have agreed on that, and more importantly, the conservative factions sound like they are not going to put up a big fight. there is a big fight brewing on this, but we don't know the overall number. the resolution takes all of the current programs and extend them into the next year. the question is when conservatives usually want to see the overall spending member come down a little bit. and what they have done is they have agreed to use the numbers that ran last year's deal that vote so that has taken a lot of the fight out of this issue this
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time around. >> is a bill coming up later this week with sequestration. can you tell about that bill and what the lawmakers are likely to bring that in 98? >> sure. this comes down on the debate that's been happening over the last couple of weeks or so. about a month or as who ago in late july, early august, the congress passed the bill that would require the president to lay out the specific sequestration cuts where the defense cuts and other cuts would come from specifically, trying to put some more political pressure on all sides to try to get good of these cuts. the president had actually missed the deadline for doing that. he signed the bill but missed the deadline for providing information. the white house said that on friday. just ahead of that the house is going to try to vote to undo those cuts. they said they've taken a couple different votes to undo the defense cuts and they are going to take one more vote on that. essentially that the bill isn't likely to go anywhere in the senate. democrats actually and some republicans like having those sequesters hanging out and extending the kutz hanging out there as a pressure to try to
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force both sides to actually get a long-term deal done on some of these debt issues and spending issues. so it's i guess it's safe to say they are this week on the house floor. >> they will redirect quickly. what other measures are on the agenda before the lawmakers head home next month to campaign for the reelection? >> there is a suspension calendar which is a lot of measures that could come up. the need two-thirds vote that's usually where you take care of easy stuff. among those is the house is going to vote to accept the frederick douglass statute and the district of columbia. they're going to provide that within two years. things dealing with camping season and federal land. so a lot of housekeeping things given that they are going to be gone once they get out of here for the one or two weeks stretch the you're going to be gone after the election this is a chance to take care of the legislation that piles up and then deal with stuff before they go out for just as long a break.
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>> thanks for your time. foam dinan is the politics effort for the washington post. >> my pleasure. you can see live coverage of the house on c-span. the senate right here in c-span2. senators returning from their party lunches. we will be gaveling back in at 2:15 eastern for more work on the veterans jobs bill providing training and veteran's preference is to meet certain federal jobs. the procedural vote on that is set to take place shortly after the lawmakers return. the house is holding aof the se procedural vote on the reauthorization and landhe exchangeable. you can see tmohat on the companion network, c-span. veterans affairs to establish a veterans affairs to establish a floor by 17 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent, the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate on the motion to proceed to s. 3457, a
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bill to require the secretary of veterans fairs to establish a veterans job corps and for other purposes, shall be brought it a close? the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
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vote:
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the presiding officer: on this vote, the yeas are 95, the nays are 1. three-fifths of the senators duly chosen and sworn having voted in the affirmative, the motion is agreed to.
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the presiding officer: the senator from new york. the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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mr. sanders: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from vermont. mr. sanders: i ask the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. sanders: mr. president, there has been, appropriately enough, a lot of discussion about our $16 trillion national debt and our $1 trillion federal deficit and this is in fct an enormously important issue and it is an issue that the congress must address. but it must address this crisis in a way that is fair to the middle class and the working families and the seniors and our kids. it is an issue that must be addressed but it must be addressed fairly. mr. president, when we talk about the deficit and the national debt, it is important to remember -- to remember how we got to where we are today.
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and we can simply go back ten years or so to january of 2001 when president clinton left office and president bush assumed the presidency. and at that particular moment in history, in january, 2001, i hope everybody remembers that not only did this country have a $236 billion surplus, all of the projections for the future at that point were that that surplus was going to grow and grow and grow. and, in fact, at that point one of the great debates taking place in congress is what do we do with all of that money? how much do you give back in tax breaks, how much do you put into social security. that was the debate in january, 2001. so before we discuss how we go forward in deficit reduction today with a trillion dollars
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deficit, it's important to remember that and it's important to remember how we got to where we are today. and how we got to where we are today really in a significant way is not complicated. president bush assumed office and within a few years we were fighting not just one war in afghanistan but another war in iraq. and i hope that the american people appreciate that many of the deficit hawks today, the people who tell us gee, we've got to cut social security and medicare and medicaid and nutrition and education, we got to cut, cut, cut, cut, when asked to pay for those wars, they had nothing to say. paul ryan, mr. romney's vice-presidential nominee, chairman of the house budget committee, voted for the wars but forgot to pay for them. nobody knows exactly how much these two wars will end up
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costing, but the guess is by the time we take care of the last veteran seven years from now -- 70 years from now, those wars may run up over $3 trillion and we did not pay for them to the tune of one penny. all put on the credit card, all added to the deficit. and, mr. president, i find it somewhat unusual that many of our republican deficit hawks who stand up here on the floor of the senate every day and tell us how deeply concerned they are about the deficit, well, they all voted for huge tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires to the tune of a trillion dollars over a ten-year period. well, you don't give huge tax breaks to the rich and not offset it if you are serious about the deficit and not being hypocritical. and many of my republican
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friends during the bush years voted for the insurance company written medicare part d prescription drug program, written by the insurance companies and the drug companies, going to cost us about $400 billion over a ten-year period. mr. president, how did we pay for that program? oh, i guess we didn't pay for it at all. our deficit hawk friends voted for that program which was good politics, i guess. they forgot to pay for it. add another $400 billion to the deficit. and, mr. president, it is important to understand that today in the midst of this horrendous recession, the issue is not just cuts, cuts, cuts. the issue is that right now, today, at 15.2% revenue as a percentage of gross domestic product, it is lower than any time in the last 60 years
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because we deregulated weet --, wall street, republicans wanted that, some democrats wanted that, allowed investor banks to merge with commercial banks to merge with insurance companies. as a result of the illegal behavior on wall street we were driven into recession, mass unemployment, businesses go under, less tax revenue comes in and 15.2% revenue today as a percentage of g.d.p. is the lowest that it has been in 60 years. so, mr. president, those are some of the reasons that today we are experiencing a trillion-dollar deficit and a $16 trillion national debt. now, my republican friends will say, you know, bernie, be that as it may, yeah, maybe we should have paid for the wars, maybe we
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shouldn't have given tax breaks to the millionaires when the very rich are doing very well, may we should have paid for medicare part-d, but be that as it may, it's water over the dam, we are where we are right now and we've got to go forward on deficit reduction. so what are their ideas, mr. president? well, mitt romney has not been as clear as i think he should be about his ideas but we do have a blueprint from our republican friends from the ryan budget. and as you know, congressman ryan is chairman of the budget committee, presented a budget. it was passed by the republican house. and here is what -- some of what the republican budget is about. what the republicans want to do is to make cuts to social security and to raise the retirement age.
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and i want to say a word about social security right now because it's an issue i feel very, very strongly about. mr. president, i think a lot of americans don't know this. social security, because it is funded by the payroll tax and not the general treasury, had not contributed one nickel to our deficit. social security today has a $2.7 trillion surplus and can pay out all benefits owed to all eligible americans for the next 21 years. in my view, it would be wrong, it would be deeply wrong, to consider cuts in social security as part of deficit reduction because social security hasn't contributed a nickel to the deficit. but our republican friends support cuts in social security and many of them over a period of years want to move toward the
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privatization of social security. mr. president, the ryan budget would end medicare as we know it in a ten-year period. now, what does that mean? what that means is that if in ten years you are 70 years of age, you would be given a voucher for $8,000, as i understand the number. and let's just assume that an individual walks into a -- 70-year-old individual, 75-year-old individual walks into a doctor's office and the doctor says, "joe, mary, i'm really sorry to tell you but you're dealing with cancer. we're going to have to send you to the hospital. there are a whole number of treatments that you are going to have to take -- undertake and those treatments are going to cost you tens and tens of thousands of dollars, if not more." and that individual then goes to
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his or her insurance company and says, "i have $8,000 to buy an insurance policy." mr. president, what do you think that insurance agent is going to tell that individual when that person is facing tens and tens of thousands of dollars of medical bills? that insurance company's function is to make money. that's what its function is. and they're not going to say "oh, sure, thanks, give us the $8,000 so we can spend dollars 0 on health care costs for you." it ain't going to happen. and that insurance company's going to say "there's the door. try somebody he will." and that's going to happen to a whole lot of people. and you can think what the end of the story is. and the enof the story is if that family, that individual doesn't have any money, he or she is going to go to his kids, and if they don't have any money, the outcome is not going to be good because that person simply will not have the treatment that he or she needs.
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mr. president, the ryan budget proposes to cut $770 billion over a ten-year period for medicaid and that would result in at least 14 million americans losing their insurance and would also cut nursing home assistance in half, threatening the long-term care of some 10 million senior citizens. now, many people don't know that. many people say, well, you know, medicaid is for the poor, and it is certainly true that millions of low-income kids deservedly through the children's health insurance program get their insurance -- health insurance with significant help from medicaid and state money. but what people don't understand is that medicaid is also a major contributor toward nursing home care. and i want the average middle-class family to understand that if their mom or
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their pop develops alzheimer's or some other very difficult situation, can't stay at home, can't stay with their kids, has to be put in a nursing home, which is pretty expensive, understand that all over this country, medicaid is putting money into making sure that elderly people can stay in nursing homes with some degree of dignity. but it's not just social security or medicare and medicaid that our republican friends are going after n. my state of vermont -- and, mr. president, i'm sure in minnesota -- we have lower-income working-class kids who no longer can go to college because college is too expensive. we have other young people who arare graduating college $25,00, $50,000 in debt, unable to find jobs which help them pay off that debt. in my view, the pell grant
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program, which is the major -- the major way in washington we help low- and moderate-income kids, i think that is too low. too low. we're not helping enough kids with enough resources. but the ryan budget would slash college pell grants by about 60% next year alone. so if you are a parent or you're a young person in college, that is how they intend to balance the budget. mr. president, in the midst of this horrendous recession, older people, lower-income people are struggling and it's very easy to forget it here in the confines of the u.s. senate. but there are millions of americans today wondering how they're going to feed their kids tonight, who open the refrigerator and there's no food in that refrigerator, who depend on food stamps. half of the food stamp money goes to the elderly and goes to the children, but they want to make devastating cuts in food staches.
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staches -- stood stamps. so, mr. president, my main point is pretty simple. the deficit is a serious issue and we have got to address it, but it would not only be immoral, it would be bad economic policy to move toward deficit reductions, to move toward a balanced budget on the backs of millions and millions of seniors and children and working femme. to today as a result of this terrible recession are already struggling to keep their heads above water. you don't balance the budget on the backs of the most vulnerable peoplpeople in this country tha. is bad economic policy, that is immoral. there are ways to move forward which can achieve the same goals but without hurting people who are already in painment now, mr. president, what we don't talk about too much in congress
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is who is winning and who is losing in the current american economy. so i just want to bring forth a few facts that i think the american people and my colleagues should be familiar w. that is, number one, in america today we have the most inequal distribution of wealth and income of any other major country oart and worse in america today than at any time since the 1920's. and people should check it out, they may not believe me when i say, this you've got one of family, the walton family of wal-mart fame, one family owns more wealth than the bottom 40% of the american people. one family owns more wealth than the bottom four people. our republican friends say that's not enough. we have to give those people, billionaires, even more tax breaks. today the top 1%, mr. president,
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owns about 14% of the wealth of america. the bottom 60% -- that is a significant majority of the american team -- added all together boney 2.3% of the wealth of america. top 1%, 41%. bottom 60%, 2.3%. now, common sense and diseep say would suggest that when a few people have incredible wealth, when a few people are seeing their income and their wealth grow rapidly while the middle class is shrinking and poverty is increasing, commonsense and common decency suggest that you ask people on ton which is the lowest effective in decades, they have to pay their fair share of taxes before they debt med wear, medicaid and nutrition programs.
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mr. president, right now about one out of 4 major profitable corporations in taxes. we have had instances which i have portrayed on the floor of the senate of the most profitables in america in a given year paying nag in federal income dispax in fact getting a rebate from the i.r.s. well, before you tell the elderly and the children that they have got to perns kits when they can't afford it. maybe you're saying so corporate want america, sorry, we are going toned the loopholes you are currently enjoying. mr. president, every single year we are loose willing about $630 billion in tax revenue. >> because social funds are hiding their money to bermuda
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and elsewhere. these quote, unquote paid yot i can americans who love their country so much are stashing their money abroad north to avoid paying attentions in this country. and maybe before you cut education, maybe before you cut back on infrastructure, make sure make sure we do way with these tax havens and shelters and large corporation says. lastly, mr. president, we have tripled military spending since 1997. right now the united states is spending almost as much of the rest was world. combined we spend hoafer percent of our friends in europe. many of those countries provide hx to all their, they're spending 2%. we're spending twice as many nsm g.d.p. on defense. and maybe it is tim too take a
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lom of the waitinsisht siz there certainly is in the department. mr. president, on our web site, webster.senate.government, we have a whole list of ways which we can make cuts, which protect the working class and working families and the most vulnerable people in this country. but i i'm going to do everything i can, mr. president, to make sure that we do not go forward in testify. def sit reduction and giving people who are already hurting and giving more people billion airs and impel yon ars. it's bad policy and immoral and it's not something we should be doing w. to, mr. president, i will yield the floor. -- it's not something we should be doing.
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and with that, mr. president, i will yield the floor. a senator: i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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the presiding officer: the senator from oklahoma. mr. inhofe: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the quorum call in process be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. inhofe: mr. president, i think several of us have talked about the tragic terrorist attack on america 11 years ago today, and i think we all remember where we were at the time, what we did at the time. i remember so well going up to
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new york to ground zero and seeing the people that were involved and talking to the families of some of the firemen who lost their lives. and as tragic as that is, i just wonder, i have to ask the question is there any doubt after 9/11 took place 11 years ago today that those terrorists if they had the ability to send a weapon over to the united states would hesitate to do it. i look back sometimes wistfully at the days of the cold war, back when the ussr and the united states, they were predictable and we were predictable. it's different now. such concepts as mutual assured destruction at that time was some what meaningful. it was very effective. it's not effective now because you are dealing with people who are, who want to die. it's a different environment altogether. i have to say that on this
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11th year, on this particular day that when i think back about the, president obama's first budget, and that would have been four years ago, in that budget he did a lot of things i thought were very destructive to our military. and i've talked about that on the floor several times. he did away with the only fifth-generation vehicle, the f-22. he did away with our lift capacity in the c-17; did away with the future combat system. i think one thing -- i think people are aware of that, but the one thing that i think people are not aware of that happened in that same budget was doing away with the site of the ground-based interceptor. a lot of people don't remember this because this is four years ago. but if you think back at the decision that was made in this country that we had to prepare ourselves for iran having the
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capability of a weapon that could be sent all the way over to the united states and that while i'm very confident, toeuf say this, anything -- i have to say this, anything coming from the west, we have ground-based interceptors in alaska all the way down to southern california. anything coming from that way, i feel very comfortable about. but coming from the other direction, coming from iran, that's not the case. so we recognized some six or seven years ago we're going to have some kind of ground-based interceptor that would take care of a missile coming from the east. so we did that. i was part of the negotiation i say to my good friend in the presiding seat in both the czech republic and in poland. the czech republic, they had to be willing to have a radar site up there. in poland, they had to be willing to take on russia, who didn't want them to have this capability to put a ground-based
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interceptor in poland to take care of anything tkproplg -- coming from that direction. we did that. in this budget that was the first budget of president obama, he did away with that. they tried to say that maybe that was not an accurate assessment, but in 2007, n.i.e., national intelligence estimate, concluded that iran could develop an intercontinental missile capability by 2015. less than a year later, d.o.d. stated in its report on iran's military that they sent to congress -- i remember this very well, and i'm quoting now from that -- they said iran with sufficient foreign assistance, iran could probably develop and test an intercontinental ballistic missile, icbm capable of reaching the united states by 2015. totally consistent with what
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they said back in 2007. in place of the third site, the obama administration pitched a new missile defense plan, the katrina fazed adaptive approach approach -- with incremental air and land portions and so forth. i think one thing we all agree on is the smc block 3 is defense mechanism. the one that would take the place and have the capability of the ground-based interceptor in poland would be the s.m. 3 block 2-b. that's still a concept, it's on the drawing board. here we know that iran is going to have that capability by 2015, and they are saying maybe a deployment date by 2020, which leaves the united states of america and europe unprotected for five years. now, you say unprotected -- i
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say unprotected. yeah, there is some level of protection there. they talk about the egis ships. however, in subsequent budgets, the president has cut the number of egis ships capability and number of missiles they carry to the point where it leaves us still i think unprotected. not just us but also europe. now, fast forward to today and d.o.d.'s april, 2012 report. that's just a few months ago. the report on iran which again states, and i'm quoting from that report now, quote -- "iran has boosted the lethality and effectiveness of existing systems with accuracy, improvements and new submission payloads. iran may be technically capable of flight testing an intercontinental ballistic missile by -- what year? same year, 2015. secretary panetta confirmed this. he is the secretary of defense. on "60 minutes," he said earlier this year that he believes iran
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would be able to produce a nuclear weapon in about a year and then it would take them another one to two years in order to put it on a deliverable vehicle. that's, again, around 2015. leaving a five-year gap between the date when our interceptors become operational and the date that iran fields a nuclear ballistic missile capable of threatening europe and the united states. this year's budget request, president obama cut $250 million from the thad system procurement, procuring 36 interceptors instead of 42. he cuts the thad fire units from nine to six. cuts $175 million in aegis -- again, that's part of the system that would take place to replace the ground-based interceptor in poland that was already under construction. the sm-3 procurement would be delayed and procuring 29 sm-3
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block 1-b interceptors instead of 46. in other words, cutting down dramatically our capability at the same time that there could be no doubt in anyone's mind from what i have just said that 2015 is a realistic date when they would -- when iran would have the capability of a -- of not just the weapon but a delivery system. additionally, the president has failed to plan or program enough aegis ships in the budget to provide full coverage. in other words, you could move them around. they have a good rocket capability. i have been very supportive of the aegis system, but he is cutting down the number of those. those would really be there just for the protection of europe and not the protection of the united states. at the end of the -- president obama's now-infamous meeting with russian president dmitry medvedev -- we remember that very well. that was on march 26 of this year. president obama said, and i'm quoting now -- not knowing, i
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guess, that the mike was open, he said on all these issues but particularly missile defense, this can be solved but it's important for him, talking about the income of president vlad -- incoming president vladimir putin to give me space. this is president obama, give me space. this is my last election. after my election, i will have more flexibility. well, i have to say that thinking now back 11 years ago, the tragedy, the 3,000 people that were immediately killed in that horrible terrorist attack, again, i asked the same question i asked a few minutes ago. is there any doubt in anyone's mind that a person who would do this, a terrorist that would come over on a well-orchestrated attack, terrorist attack on america, would they hesitate using a system delivered on some type of a vehicle to the eastern part of the united states? and i say no, i can't imagine that anyone believes that that is not a possibility.
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and as tragic as 3,000 people being killed was, it doesn't take much of an imagination to look at any type of missile hitting a major american city. you wouldn't be talking about 3,000. you would be talking about 300,000 or even three million. so i think this is a day on the 11th anniversary that we need to take the warning that we received 11 years ago and look in the future, not just for ourselves. in my case for my 20 kids and grandkids, but we cannot suggest ourselves if we need to as quickly as possible take care of this horrible gap that we have in our defense from an incoming missile coming from the east. with that, madam president, i yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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mr. enzi: madam president? the senator from wyoming. mr. enzi: i ask further proceedings under the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. enzi: thank you. sips this is a day of remembrance of 911, with when i started my day this morning i pick up a book i read from time to time, it's called "one simple act" by debbie macomber, it's about gratitude and being general use -- generous and the very first paragraph i picked up happened to be about 911. it says watch the helpers. after the bombing of the twin towers of new york's world trade
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center the nation was stunned. parents didn't know what to say to their children, they'd seen such evil things on television that even adults couldn't put the events into any kind of context. when a few parents wrote to mr. rogers, the beloved children's television personality to ask for advice, fred rogers said tell them to watch the helpers. what wise advice. i've thought about his answer many times. when tragedy hits, don't focus on the faces of pain and horror. let your eyes follow those who are rescuing, feeding, healing, sweeping, comforting, and rebuilding. on 911, it was the selfless firefighters who took center stage. they will be remembered long after the evildoers are forgotten. what good advice, watch the helpers. i yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll.
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quorum call:
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